Can You Report a Bitcoin Address or Scam?

Even though Bitcoin’s algorithm is complex and made to keep hackers out, it is unfortunate that scammers will stop at nothing in order to access the assets of another individual. Also, because there is no central authority at work for the Bitcoin network, some might see that as an opportunity to openly practice criminal activity. In these cases, it is up to the users of the Bitcoin community to keep them at bay. Transactions on bitcoin are non-reversible, so the only way to avoid getting scammed is to stop before it happens.

Can you report a bitcoin address? Yes, you can. There are a few programs in which you are able to report a bitcoin address. One that has become more well-known than others is  “www.bitcoinabuse.com/“. (Clickable link removed because Reddit anarchists and pro-anonymity extremists spammed the agency with fake addresses after the article was shared. Take a look at the April 2020 report chart.) Bitcoin Abuse is a program that depends on Bitcoin’s users to make sure that all scammers are caught before.

But it seems early bitcoin users don’t want to take any precautions to make it safer for the average user based on my edit above. The following site link was also removed. You can visit the sites with copy/paste or typing manually.

You can also lookup the person’s specific identity at “bitcoinwhoswho.com/“ and report them for fraudulent behavior. Since identities and transactions are processed through public keys by default, anyone can access this information. Until bitcoin and crypto extremists learn to cooperate with traditional pathways to adoption, scammers will continue to ruin any chance it has at gaining mainstream adoption. (Author-4/21/2020)

Bitcoin Abuse

This program holds a database open to the public specifically aimed to catch users with ill-intent and stores the addresses of those that have already been caught. Thieves, suspicious wallet addresses, and scammers are all tracked from this site. As more addresses are reported, the easier it becomes for blockchain analysis firms to do their jobs.

It was recorded in August of 2019, that were over 5,400 reports alone, which prove that people are serious about keeping watch for Bitcoin scammers. The reports continue to rise as the months proceed, not due to the number of scams, but because of those reporting it.   

The only downfall of this site is the fact that the addresses remain there forever, which is good for some, but those that are reported but have not been used for any malicious reason will never get their addresses cleared.

Bitcoin Who’s Who

This site allows you to see if the address you are sending or receiving from has been reported before. You can also check the wallet balance, find information on the user and other profiles. You can also use a person’s real name or email to see if any addresses of theirs have been reported.

Bitcoin Scams

Scams come in different forms, and it is important for you to be aware of how they may choose to present themselves to you. A lot of them are obvious, but some people may not realize it until it is too late. When scams arise, you should report immediately or make them known to the public in some way so that others do not get caught up in them either.

Scam Coins

“Alternative coins” will use other popular brand names such as Bitcoin in their bio to make it seems as if they are somehow affiliated with each other. Then will use the pump and dump method falsely “pump” up the price so they can dump the holdings, and that way gains a profit.

Sometimes they might do an airdrop where they offer free coins to people as long as they become a part of their community. Their sites will usually be flashy and attention-grabbing and make it seem as if investors are about to miss the investment of a lifetime, but do not be misled by this foolery.

Prize (Free) Giveaways

Scammers will offer a free giveaway in exchange for a small registration fee that also requires you giving up personal information like your name, email, phone number, and address. Allowing scammers to take on your Bitcoin identity. These types of scams should be reported the first time you see it so that no one else can fall prey to it.

Malware

When an address is copied, this type of program will alter it once it is pasted in order to have the bitcoins sent to the hacker rather than the original person. Double-check the addresses and make sure that they are the same, but if they are different, you should report the altered address right away. Especially since once the transaction is added to the blockchain, there is no way to change or refund it once it goes through, so check ahead of time.

Ransomware

This is a form of malware that will restrict you from sending or receiving bitcoins unless you send bitcoin for a ransom. The best way to get rid of this issue is to seek professional computer assistant to help you remove unwanted viruses or programs.

Impersonation 

When scammers create a fake account or steal identities to disguise themselves as someone else. Fakers will sometimes send direct messages to people, acting like that person so they can receive a Bitcoin transfer from an unknowing victim.

Or they will wait until the original person posts something on their page and then comment a link to a “free giveaway,” and since it looks like the real account, it fools some people. This is why a lot of social media pages have the blue verification feature for celebrities and influencers to avoid phonies.

In-Person

Unless this is a trusted individual, do not set up a time and place to meet. Besides the risk of getting hurt or robbed, some con-artists have been known to exchange your Bitcoin with counterfeit fiat currency. Rather than meet anyone in person, take advantage of a platform that uses p2p transferring.

Blackmail

Hackers will claim to have hacked into your computer and webcam, threatening to send people something that you might not like being shared to the public unless you send them their desired number of Bitcoins. But honestly, do you not think that if a hacker can make it as far as tapping into your computer that they could just take the Bitcoins on their own?

Phishing Schemes 

Phishing is basically scamming people into revealing information like credit card numbers or passwords to accounts under the false identity of well-known companies. There are two main types of phishing strategies, and they are through emails and websites.

Email 

They may get you to begin clicking on things in an email in an attempt to receive some sort of engagement with you or ask you to reset your password. If you are not sure if it is from an actual company, you can always contact them directly via social media accounts or calling and asking.

Websites

This is sometimes connected to the emails as they may sometimes provide links to fake sites that will take hold of your information should you choose to sign in. Search engines can even have them listed in the results or app stores—some are even sponsored. Be careful to not install anything prompted by the site unless you know for sure that it is the real one.

Pyramid Schemes

These are rapidly growing schemes because they bring in the help of other people. They make people believe that if they are able to invite others, they will gain some sort of reward at the end, but really, they gain nothing.

Stay Vigilant

Before sending or receiving Bitcoin to and from unknown an address, it is better to check and make sure that they are not a hacker trying to get into your account. Check their addresses on the site I named in the first section and make sure that you can see the signs of a scam before you end up losing your stash.

Smart scammers would not use the same address twice even if it does not get reported, but those that you see pop up more than once are ones you definitely say for sure are scammers. Be smart, be safe, and stay vigilant so that you do not fall into the trap of a hacker or scammer and end up losing your assets or even your identity.

Tim Conner

TC first began coding on TRS-80’s in high school in 1979. He has been around since the early days where you had to create a function if you wanted your computer to do something. From there to Atari, Commodore, Apple, and PC, he’s written code for them all. Trained in medicine rather than tech, he kept up with the tech world by writing the occasional utility to help with medical training. He also got involved in tech investing early, and managed to avoid the boom/bust cycle in the 90’s because he recognized that many companies didn’t serve a product that consumers needed. Now he applies this background, training and investing approach to cryptocurrency. He shares his thoughts here while providing educational resources for beginner to intermediate cryptocurrency investors and users.

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